Friday, 22 November 2013

Film Review: REPULSION

REPULSION (1965) 105min

(Figure 1: REPULSION Poster)

REPULSION, directed by Roman Polanski in 1965 is a film designed and created to make any audience feel uncomfortable within their own skin. The story unfolds around a young girl known as Carol, who clearly suffers severely from social interactions with men and thoughts evolving around them. As said by 'TV Guides' movie review; ''One of the most frightening and disturbing pictures ever made.'' (TV Guide, s.d) is certainly more graphic to modern day viewers. Many believe the coarse of such heavy weighted sadness is due to past encounters, perhaps to do with abusive tenancies from her Farther, however we never truly find out.

(Figure 2 & 3: Sexual References within REPULSION)

Throughout the film, there are many sexual references appearing when you least expect them to be. As Ian McKay says within his film review; '''A potent cocktail of sexual repression, madness and violence[...]'' (I. McKay, 2006)  The cinematography works perfectly when creating a huge visual image to the audience to induce personal representation from Carols eyes. As seen in Figure 3, a shadow lingers over Carol; however the shadow itself appears to be an erected penis suspended over her. With that said, there are many other stronger references, as Figure 2 represents, therefore bringing out the subconscious reactions of sexual behaviors. 

(Figure 5: Carol 'Preparing' for her Dream)

One the last nightmarish scenes is when we see Carol, 'preparing' for her Rapist she expects to be visited by during the night. It is thought she is awaiting and wanting such a thing to happen to her this time, despite earlier on in the film. The lipstick itself shows her preparing yet a slight sense of vanity, in which is not present before. At this point the audience is experiencing Carol at her most ill minded state, to where we fully understand her conscious and subconscious merging together in one full reaction. 

To conclude, REPULSION is one of the most famous films to invade and protrude the mind of the viewer. As 'TIME' Magazine states in their review; ''At second glance, or as often as a moviegoer can bear to peek through his knotted fingers, it is a Gothic horror story, a classic chiller of the Psycho school and approximately twice as persuasive.'' (TIME Magazine, s.d) is how any modern auidences experience this film; as something that some may relate and feel attatched too. However viewing such destruction of the Human psyche can leave its own mark upon every individual, embracing every aspect and desire by all.


T.V Guide Magazine. (s.d) REPULSION Film Review (Accessed 22.11.2013)

I. McKay. (2006) REPULSION Film Review (Accessed 22.11.2013)

TIME Magazine. (s.d) REPULSION Film Review (Accessed 22.11.2013)

Illustration List:

Fig. 1. REPULSION Poster (1965) From: REPULSION Directed by: Roman Polanski [Poster] United Kingdom. Compton Films. URL At: (Accessed on 22.11.2013)

Fig. 2 & 3. Sexual References within REPULSION (1965) From: REPULSION Directed by: Roman Polanski [Film Still] United Kingdom. Compton Films. URL At: [48:43, 46:03] (Accessed on 22.11.2013)

Fig. 4. Carol 'Preparing' for her Dream (1965) From: REPULSION Directed by: Roman Polanski [Film Still] United Kingdom. Compton Films. URL At: [1:28:19] (Accessed on 22.11.2013)


I'm not sure how to reference 'time' when directed to YouTube, or any other video sources. I have tried looking on the UCA's Harvard Referencing Site but was unable to locate the information. Figures 2 - 4 are screenshots from the link.

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